The Idea of the Popular: The study of popular culture in any given period offers insights into both the conditions of social formation and into the language and attitudes of the various social groups competing with each other for dominance — what we might call hegemonic struggle — at the time. This chapter is concerned with the qualifications which must be borne in mind while engaging in such an exploration of cinema popular in Britain between 1945–1965. The book as a whole is, precisely, a speculation about the available meanings of Woman in circulation at a time when cinema could be said to be the dominant form of mass culture.
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